Valentine's Day Validations

So we created this blog last summer with the idea of sharing out ideas with fellow educators. We designed, decorated and developed  our site and worked to get it all done. Then you know what happened? It. Sat. Empty.  I was intimidated. I read dozens of blogs on a weekly basis.  I searched ideas all over the web.  But when it came to writing down and sharing my own ideas and inspirations—I was drawing a blank.

So... seven months later, leave it to Valentines’ Day to inspire my first post. I was frantically racing to put together the all so important valentines for my two sons-I went from the print and copy store, bounced on over to the Amazon online cart, then raced to the Target dollar bins just to find myself sitting on Thursday night working away at roughly 30 valentines.


The 14th came and went and the boys were so excited to hand out their creations. (let’s be honest-mine!) We received SO many complements on them and my response every time was “Thanks—but I got the idea from someone else!” (specifically, blogs like Just Another Day in Paradise and Design, Wash, Rinse, Repeat).  I felt guilty every time I said it, like all the work I had done wasn’t justified.  But that’s when I made the connection between the silly valentines and my own classroom.

As teachers, we do a disservice when we feel like we can’t take ideas or lesson from each other. 


We are the most valuable resources! Duh?!  And so it was fitting that my first post would be all about a great lesson I recently taught—that was inspired by another teacher!

I recently set out to tackle the ominous Common Core standard “treatment of themes”.  I found very little available as far as resources go, so I decided to start where I usually do—with a picture book! I started searching the web and came across a lesson by a fellow teacher using two classic books by beloved author Patricia Polacco.  After reading her lesson and realizing how similar the two stories were in regards to various story elements, I was then able to build off of it to create one of my favorite lessons of the year!  Without her great book selection I would never have been able to take the lesson to the next level and to use it teach that ever elusive standard. 



Moral of the story—be open to others ideas and unashamed to build your own beautiful with the help of someone else.  

ThInG yOu!

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